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Competent Pharmaceutical and Analytical Scientists are in demand in the pharmaceutical industry. If you have a degree in Chemistry, Pharmacy or other related disciplines, the IMU MSc in Analytical & Pharmaceutical Chemistry programme could help you extend your knowledge and expertise in the field.

MSc in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

The programme encompasses drug discovery, drug design, drug development, techniques for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of drugs, quality management and the regulatory environment, and research skills including writing proposals, scientific writing and specialized laboratory skills.

IMU’s Analytical & Pharmaceutical Chemistry programme consists of two semesters and is a combination of course work and research. Learning activities are conducted on weekends for the convenience of working students.

The MSc in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry (MAPC) programme is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry, UK. The Royal Society of Chemistry is the world’s leading chemistry community and the oldest chemical society in the world. Accreditation by the Royal Society of Chemistry is a formal recognition that the programme is in line with international quality and standards. Employers are assured that graduates with accredited degrees have achieved the standards required to be considered professional chemists.

Key Facts


  • MSc in Analytical & Pharmaceutical Chemistry (Master of Science)


  • March and September

total duration

  • Full time : 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 – 6 years

Tuition Fees

  • All IMU alumni who are self-funding their postgraduate studies and meet the eligibility criteria will be eligible for a 15% bursary.

Mode of Delivery

Conventional / Open & Distance Learning (ODL)

About Open and Distance Learning (ODL)

What is ODL?

Open and distance learning provides working professionals with an alternative to conventional programmes at universities, giving them the opportunity to earn a university degree without interrupting their career. As Malaysia’s first and most established private medical and health sciences university with 29 years of dedicated focus in healthcare education, IMU offers a few postgraduate programmes via this learning mode with students having the opportunity to benefit from all the teaching and support that the University has to offer.

Benefits of ODL

Designed especially for students with employment, family or other commitments, this mode of learning provides flexibility and convenience for the student to schedule their studies around these obligations and around their lifestyle – allowing a student to plan and pace their own learning at a time and learning environment that is most suitable for the student. It also saves students from spending time travelling to the university, the costs of travelling to the university and the costs of staying near the university.

Teaching Methods

Teaching methods include a series of lectures (Powerpoint lectures, video lectures and i-lectures) supplemented by online discussions, forums and quizzes. For each subject taken, students will be part of a student online community. Students will also be assigned a mentor who will be available to answer any questions and provide feedback on their progress.

Students will be assessed fully online via the in-course assessment assignments and end of module assessment assignment so they don’t need to be at the University to sit your exams. They will the receive their grades and feedback online.

In order to do this, students will be required to have a desktop/laptop, internet connection, a headset and webcam to participate in online tutorials and other group activities, access to standard office software – such as Microsoft Word and Excel, plus any standard browser, such as Chrome, Edge or Firefox and Skype for certain online sessions.

Your Commitment

Time will be an ODL student’s most important commitment – understanding, working through and reflecting on all teaching materials. The hours spent per week on their studies for the duration of the programme depends on module taken.

Support from University

ODL students are fully registered student of the University with all of the support and services available to them, the same as the on-campus students. Technical support will also be provided if students have difficulty in accessing the e-learning platform.

Why Study Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry at IMU?

An Established Private Healthcare University

IMU is Malaysia’s first and most established private medical and healthcare university with over 30 years of dedicated focus in healthcare education.

IMU achieved the SETARA-2018/2019 Tier 6 status (Outstanding) under the Mature University category.

Renowned and Highly Experienced Faculty

Students will be taught and supervised by staff who are experts in their field with well-established reputations nationally and internationally. The academic community of IMU pursues and achieves excellence in a wide range of research activities.

Many of them present their research findings in international conferences to keep up to date with the latest development in specialised areas. They also publish their findings in international peer-reviewed journals.

Curriculum Benchmarked to International Standards

The curriculum has been developed to meet high international standards and stringent Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) standards.

The programme is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry, UK. The Royal Society of Chemistry is the world’s leading chemistry community and the oldest chemical society in the world.

Pursue a Master’s Degree While Working Full Time

Face-to-face teaching and learning activities are conducted on weekends for the convenience of students who have personal or work commitments on weekdays.

Students have the option to conduct the research project at their workplace, and the flexibility to choose the optimum number of credits to take each semester to suit their personal, work and study commitments.

ODL mode offers additional flexibility to study out of campus

Research Partnerships

Students will benefit from IMU’s national and international research collaborations with renowned institutions in areas such as drug discovery, design and development, natural products, drug synthesis, pharmaceutical and biomedical analysis.

Programme Structure

1 (20 weeks) 2 (20 weeks)

The mixed mode programme consists of two semesters and is a combination of course work (21 credits) and research (22 credits). New semesters commence in March and September each year and each semester comprises 20 weeks.

Face-to-face teaching and learning activities are conducted on weekends.

The Course Modules include

  • Modern Analytical Techniques for Qualitative Analysis (4 credits)
  • Modern Analytical Techniques for Quantitative Analysis (4 credits)
  • Principles of Drug Discovery (4 credits)
  • Computational Drug Discovery Techniques (4 credits)
  • Quality Management and Regulatory Systems (2 credits)
  • Research Methodology and Scientific Writing (3 credits)
  • Research Project I (4 credits)
  • Research Project II (18 credits) The curriculum is reviewed periodically and is subject to change.

Course work modules including Research Methodology & Scientific Writing

  • Research Project I

Course work modules

  • Research Project II

Entry Requirement


Applicants are required to have obtained:

  • A Bachelor Degree in related discipline with a minimum
    cGPA of 2.75 or equivalent, as accepted by the
    University’s Senate; or
  • A Bachelor Degree in related discipline with a minimum cGPA of 2.50, but not meeting cGPA 2.75, can be accepted subject to rigorous internal assessment; or
  • A Bachelor’s Degree in the field or related fields or equivalent with minimum CGPA of 2.00 and not meeting CGPA of 2.50, can be accepted subject to a minimum of 5 years working experience in the relevant field and rigorous internal assessment.

For Malaysian Students

Not applicable

For International Students

  • IELTS : Band score 5.0; or
  • TOEFL (iBT) : Overall score of 42; or
  • Cambridge English : Advanced (CAE) : Overall score of 154; or
  • Cambridge English : Proficiency (CPE) : Overall score of 154; or
  • Cambridge Linguaskill : Overall score of 160; or
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) : Overall score of 47;


The following categories of students are exempted from the above requirements:

  • International students from countries in which English is the first language.
  • International students who graduated from any Malaysian or other institutions where the curriculum is delivered in English.

Please refer to our Student Admissions Policy for more information

Application and Registration Fees

Fee Malaysian Student (RM) International Student (RM)
Application Fee 150 500
Registration Fee 1,100 3,400
Refundable Caution Deposit 2,000 2,000
Student Association Fee per Semester 40 40
Tuition Fee (RM)
Tuition Fee (Conventional Mode) 43,000 53,750
Tuition Fee (ODL Mode) 38,800 38,800
  • All IMU alumni who are self-funding their postgraduate studies and meet the eligibility criteria will be eligible for a 15% bursary.
  • A bursary of RM8,000 is available for international students joining the 2022 intake.
  • A 10% bursary is available for members of special groups. Click HERE for more details.
  • Application fee is payable upon submission of application.
  • Registration fee and refundable caution deposit is payable upon acceptance of the offer letter issued by the IMU Admissions Office.
  • Students must adhere to the Policy on Payment of Fees

Views from Our Community

Yamen Alkhatib

Alumnus, MSc in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

I have learned so many things in IMU that helped and is still helping me in my academic life. IMU is a very welcoming place and it gives me the balance between international experience and a homely atmosphere. In addition to graduating with a Master’s degree, in IMU, I have also made new friends from different backgrounds and cultures. The classes in the first two semesters built up my knowledge and practical skills in pharmaceutical analysis, drug design and development. My Research Project was in the areas of pharmacokinetics and bioavailability in animals and I have gained essential quantitative research and problem-solving skills during the Research Project. My ambition is to share my research experience and work alongside other researchers to discover and develop new drugs and therapies to improve the quality of life for the society.

Dr Low May Lee

Lecturer, MSc in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

The Master of Science in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry (MAPC) programme prepares students with extended knowledge, skills and experiences in a variety of analytical instrumentations and analysis that will be utmost beneficial for career opportunities in industries and research. In addition, students will have added advantages in learning detailed aspects of the drug discovery and development journey from lab bench to bedside as well as being part of the actual process when they undertake their research project module. This will meet the needs and interests of students that are enthusiastic with the current trend of research in pharmaceutical chemistry. Not least, students also gained first-hand insights on quality management and regulatory systems as they will be taught by experts from industries in this area. This programme certainly provides a fertile platform to enrich students, both professionally and personally.

Dr Chin Swee Yee

Senior Lecturer, MSc in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

The IMU MSc in Analytical and Pharmaceutical Chemistry (MAPC) programme will develop your knowledge of the design, development, analysis and production of medicines, the drug industry and regulatory affairs. The programme also develops research skills in a student. The programme provides not only knowledge in research but also in-depth knowledge in the theory of analytical chemistry in pharmaceuticals providing laboratory skills, preparing students to be well-versed to work across multiple industries. Besides, it provides opportunities to implement the research in real time and publish the same which is an add-on to the student’s profile or resume. In addition to that, with the pharmaceutical industry growing rapidly, the need for more pharmaceutical science graduates, shows the high statistics for the current requirement of manpower and scope for the field.


What are the programme learning outcomes?

Programme learning outcomes (PLOs) are a set of learning outcomes which outlines the knowledge, competencies and values students will acquire at the conclusion of the programme. The MAPC PLOs are that students, at the end of the programme, will be able to:

  • Apply knowledge and concepts in analytical and pharmaceutical chemistry to solve theoretical and practical problems in the relevant fields.
  • Apply and adapt critical thinking, problem solving and scientific skills to find solutions to unfamiliar and complex issues in chemical, pharmaceutical and related industries.
  • Critically evaluate information from various sources and use it appropriately to practice self-directed lifelong learning.
  • Develop and validate analytical methods to perform qualitative and quantitative analysis by utilising appropriate instrumentation and techniques.
  • Demonstrate productive working relationships as a team lead or member and communicate effectively by writing clear, concise and orderly documents and/or giving clear oral presentations.
  • Demonstrate appropriate professional and social skills in the practice of chemistry or advancement of the chemical and pharmaceutical sciences.
  • Plan, organise and carry out projects systematically and deliver results in the areas of analytical and pharmaceutical sciences.
  • Demonstrate high standards of professional ethics and responsibilities by complying with relevant codes of conduct and practice.

What are the programme educational objectives?

Programme educational objectives (PEOs) are broad statements that describe the career and professional accomplishments that the programme is preparing graduates to achieve after they graduated.

Three to five years upon successful completion of the program, our MAPC graduates will be:

  • Professionals who are competent in the application of analytical and pharmaceutical sciences in a wide range of industries.
  • Professionals who practice with personal autonomy, integrating ethics, professionalism and social skills into their interactions with stakeholders.
  • Professionals who are versatile team leaders and communicators, providing scientific solutions to achieve the organisational goals.
  • Professionals who are tenacious in seeking solutions to manage complex issues in analytical and pharmaceutical sciences through continuous advancement of knowledge and skills in their field of practice.

What are the entry requirements?

Applicants are required to have obtained:

  • A bachelor’s degree in related discipline with minimum CGPA of 2.75 or equivalent, as accepted by the University’s Senate; or
  • A bachelor’s degree in related discipline or equivalent with minimum CGPA of 2.50 and not meeting CGPA of 2.75, can be accepted subject to rigorous internal assessment; or
  • A bachelor’s degree in related discipline or equivalent not meeting CGPA of 2.50, can be accepted subject to a minimum of 5 years working experience in relevant field.


English language requirement:
All students are normally required to provide written evidence of their ability in the English Language in order to study in IMU. The standard English Proficiency requirements are usually overall band score of IELTS 6.5 or TOEFL 550 (PBT) or 79 (IBT) or MUET band 4.

What is the structure of the programme?

Semester contents are available in the programme brochure [Download Brochure]

What are the teaching/learning approaches used?

Teaching and learning methods vary in line with the objectives of the course modules. They include interactive plenary, workshop, computer aided learning, hands-on laboratory practical and blended learning (combination of online with classroom learning).

How are the students’ progress assessed?

Students are continuously assessed throughout the programme via in course-assessments including assignments, practical reports and oral presentations. There are no written examinations. To progress from one semester to the next, students must perform satisfactorily during each semester.

Who are the teaching staff?

The faculty, comprising local and international lecturers with PhD qualification, have many years of academic and industry experience in various related field of specialisations that include pharmacy, pharmaceutical chemistry, analytical chemistry, polymer chemistry, natural products, inorganic chemistry, surfactant chemistry, oleochemistry, pharmaceutical technology, biotechnology, molecular biology, drug discovery, formulation and drug delivery, pharmacokinetics and pharmacognosy. All faculty are actively involved in research and much of their work has been published in ISI-indexed journals. Some staff have successfully patented their discoveries.

What distinguishes this programme from other similar courses?

  • The only master’s programme in this discipline that is offered in mixed mode (Structure B: Course work and Research) in Malaysia.
  • The only master’s programme in this region that provides opportunity for students to specialise in both analytical chemistry and pharmaceutical chemistry fields.
  • The only master’s programme in this discipline in Malaysia that is delivered on weekends, giving opportunity for working adults to balance work commitments and learning.
  • The only master’s programme in this discipline in Malaysia having range of practical/hands-on sessions supporting the theoretical aspects of the specialisations.
  • The course is offered on a modular basis, allowing students to enrol in either Semester 1 or Semester 2 of each year.
  • The programme is accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) UK, the oldest chemical society in the world. It is a testament that the curriculum fulfills international standards of chemistry education and research, and graduates of the programme meets the requirements of the chemical sciences profession. MAPC graduates are eligible to become a professional member of the RSC and fully satisfies the academic requirements for Chartered Chemist (CChem) award.
  • The Quality Management and Regulatory Systems module is relevant to current industrial settings particularly pharmaceutical and chemical industries. Students learn to critically evaluate, criticise and defend the regulatory guidelines and processes in quality management systems and to apply them in their workplace. The module is delivered by experienced industrial experts to give students an enriching real-life learning experience.

What is the mode of this master’s programme? How it could be differentiated from other modes of master’s study?

This programme is a mixed mode master’s, which is a combination of taught coursework with research component consisting of at least half the total credits of the programme. Taught masters on the other hand consist mainly of taught coursework, with or without a small component of project work.   Masters by research consist of research component only.

Can I pursue a PhD after completing this programme?

Yes, you can pursue a PhD after completion of this programme.  A relevant master’s may be a requirement for PhD studies. Students who graduated in this programme were able to successfully obtain scholarships to pursue their PhD.

What are my career opportunities after completing this programme?

You may work in pharmaceutical, chemical, oleochemical and phytochemical industries, besides working in specialised government institutions, like the Chemistry Department of Malaysia, and partake in drug testing and evaluation. This programme is also a stepping stone to PhD study.

Are there hands-on laboratory practical in this programme?

Yes, besides research, the two coursework modules Modern Analytical Techniques in Quantitative Analysis and Modern Analytical Techniques in Qualitative Analysis contains hands-on laboratory practical of 46 hours and 19 hours, respectively.

Are there hands-on laboratory practical in this programme?

Yes, besides research, the two coursework modules Modern Analytical Techniques in Quantitative Analysis and Modern Analytical Techniques in Qualitative Analysis contains hands-on laboratory practical of 46 hours and 19 hours, respectively.

Are there hands-on computational simulations in this programme?

Yes, in one of the coursework modules Computational Drug Discovery Techniques comprising dedicated facilitated hands-on computational simulations of 65 hours. You will perform a variety of chemistry modeling, analysis and computational tasks.

Can I work while studying this programme?

Yes, this programme is suitable for students who wish to study full time, or part time. Students with work commitment can study part time while keeping their job.  As all the face-to-face teaching is conducted during weekends, your work commitment during the weekdays are not interrupted. Research work can be conducted in students’ workplace if facilities are available to support the research work.   

Is publication in peer reviewed journal a pre-requisite to graduate?

No, publication in peer reviewed journal is not a pre-requisite to graduate. You are however, highly encouraged to publish your master’s work to advance your field of research,

What is the difference between full-time and part-time study?

The duration for full-time is 1 year and students must register for all the modules in every semester to complete the programme within the stipulated time. In part-time, the number of modules to register every semester is flexible, so long as you pass all the required modules within 6 years. Part-time students are to complete the research within 3 semesters once the research has started.

As a student, what feedback will I get?

You will receive continuous feedback for improvement as you progress in every module. Here are some examples. After every oral presentation, you will receive feedback on the accuracy of the content of your presentation, and also on the soft skills aspects on delivering a presentation. After every written assignment is marked, it will be returned to you with the grades and written feedback.

What are the areas of research I can be involved in?

Areas of research under this programme cover various disciplines of chemistry encompassing analytical chemistry, medicinal chemistry, computational chemistry, phytochemistry and formulation science.

Analytical chemistry: Separation, purification, identification and quantification of chemical compounds through different analytical techniques and tools.

Medicinal chemistry: Discovery or design of new therapeutic chemicals and their development into useful medicines.  It may involve synthesis of new compounds and investigations of their relationships between the structure of natural or synthetic compounds and their biological activities.

Computational chemistry: Use of computer simulations to assist in drug design and discovery, including virtual screening of databases, identification of correlations between chemical structures and biological properties, as well as computational approaches to design molecules that interact in specific ways with therapeutic target of interest.

Phytochemistry: Isolation, identification, structure elucidation, and study of biological properties of chemical substances derived from plants.

Formulation science: Determination of the proper combination of ingredients in pharmaceutical products to achieve balance in quality and stability.

What is the difference between Open and Distance Learning (ODL) and Conventional mode?

In ODL mode, lectures and workshops are conducted online and hands-on laboratory is held face-to-face in campus. In Conventional mode most of the teaching sessions are face-to-face in campus, with some online activities such as e-forums.

What are the research facilities at IMU?

The Institute for Research, Development and Innovation (IRDI) of IMU serves as a platform to govern all research activities and to oversee all academic matters related to postgraduate programmes.

Sufficient facilities are provided for research use, which mainly include cell culture, microbiology and synthetic laboratories. These laboratories are well equipped with equipment for pertinent research activities, such as biosafety cabinets, chemical fume hoods, flow cytometer, multiplex Luminex system, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), scanning electron microscope (SEM), and differential scanning calorimeter (DSC).

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You will need to prepare the following documents for your application:

  • Verified copies of your academic qualifications
  • Evidence of English language proficiency
  • A copy of your MyKad or the identification page of your passport

These supporting documents needs to be attached electronically to your application. Please note that all of our programmes require payment of a non-refundable application fee after the application has been submitted. Application will only be processed once the payment for application fee has been made.

We wish you all the best with your application, and hope we will be welcoming you into one of our programmes soon!

A Word from the Programme Director


Senior Lecturer & Programme Director
PhD (UK), CChem, MRSC

“The Programme produces work-ready graduates who are knowledgeable and competent in practical and advanced research skills in the field. Graduates are prepared to pursue careers in academia, industry, or pursue PhD study.”

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